I don't know what came over me. We were in peanut country, we saw homemade signs advertising them every few miles on the road, and I guess I got carried away. I wanted to try boiled peanuts.
Mistakes were made.
But instead of a total loss, these burled peanuts became the seed of an idea for a new (albeit hopefully infrequent) series: foods you only need to try once. I'll try them, and with any luck, I can spare you from the experience.
At first they looked harmless, just a can full of peanuts soaking in brine. How bad could they be?
Well, let's just say at least they weren't terrible.
Boiled peanuts are like regular peanuts in the sense that you still have to remove the shell. But you can't really "crack" open the shell like you would a dry peanut. It's too waterlogged from sitting in a can of brine.
Instead, you more or less smoosh open the shell. Unfortunately, in my first attempt, I smooshed open the shell a bit too vigorously, and I reduced the poor peanut inside to mush between my fingers.
This was not a good sign texture-wise, I thought to myself.
And, unfortunately, I was absolutely correct about the texture of the peanuts. They were mushier than mooshy beans. The experience was like eating a salty, wet, peanut paste.
But on the plus side, I found the information on the can label quite instructive, particularly the cautionary warning MAY CONTAIN: PEANUTS....
I'm slightly more concerned, however, with identifying erythorbic acid. I wonder, is it at all like sodium hexametaphosphate?
Like I said, I tried 'em so you don't have to.